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Hirano Kumiko
  • Hirano Kumiko 
  • By this author: 2 Latest posted: 2018.06.05
Nonfiction writer. Started writing after working in the publishing industry. Asian tea lover. Her 2000 work Tantan yūjō (Light Exquisite Feeling) won the Shōgakukan Nonfiction Grand Prize. As well as writing about various Asian countries, she is particularly interested in the period when Taiwan was under Japanese control. Works include Teresa Ten ga mita yume: kajin kasei densetsu (Teresa Teng’s Dream: A Chinese Singing Legend), Chūgokucha: fūga no uragawa (Chinese Tea: Behind the Elegance), Tōsan no sakura: chiriyuku Taiwan no naka no Nihon (Father’s Cherry Blossoms: Japanese Culture Fading in Taiwan), and Mizu no kiseki o yonda otoko (The Man Who Caused a Water Miracle).
Nagasaki Castella: A Japanese Sweet with European Roots2018.06.05

A few years ago I began regularly crossing the country from my main residence in Yokohama to live part time in Nagasaki. Spending long stints in the historic Kyūshū city, once the center of Japan’s foreign trade, has rekindled my appreciation of its famed kasutera sponge cake. Widely recognized as a symbol of Nagasaki’s role as the gateway of Western culture, the Portuguese-inspired sweet, known…

Teresa Teng: An Asian Idol Loved in Japan2016.02.19

Last year marked the twentieth anniversary of the death of Teresa Teng, an Asian pop legend who won fame in Japan with a string of hits. Teng was only 42 when she suffered a fatal asthma attack in 1995 while at a holiday resort in Chiang Mai, Thailand. In Japan her songs remain as popular as ever on karaoke rankings and almost 3 million of her CDs and DVDs have been sold in the country since she…

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